Chief Executive Office of the Tobago Tourism Agency (TTA), Louis Lewis wants stakeholders to come together to develop a robust tourism strategy for the island.
Lewis, speaking at a stakeholders’ workshop at the Victor E Bruce Financial Complex, Scarborough last Thursday, referred to data for the years 2011-2017, which showed a declining tourism industry for Tobago, and said during this same time, the reverse was happening in other Caribbean islands.
“It says something is happening that we have not focused on. What is causing our numbers to decline overall… If we look at some of the countries around us, the reverse is happening, it means that people are eating our pie… we need to figure out what we were doing back than that we are not doing now,” Lewis said.
He called on stakeholders to come together to work for the good of the industry.
“Tobago is in a situation where we should not get worse than we are, and it requires urgent and immediate action to turn those things around. We have a very strong product, we have a very attractive product, we have marketing recognition, the issue is there is no sympathy in the marketplace. We have to get our act together. Focus, develop, maintain and market,” he said.
TTA Chairman Dr Sherma Roberts said transformation of Tobago’s tourism requires agility.
“We need stronger alignment, we need to be agile and action oriented, we need to be accountable,” she said, adding that the TTA has been working assiduously since July to address the problem.
“…up to November there was a clean strategy in terms of where the agency was going. We also asked them (stakeholders) to submit to us their five priority areas and what kind of recommendations they can present to assist us,” she said.
Roberts said the TTA has also presented an operation budget to the Tobago House of Assembly’s Executive Council, describing this as “a work in progress.”